Monday, October 28, 2013

Sonship #galatiansfest

I've got the opportunity to preach three sermons from Galatians in November for a CU weekend and two seminars on sonship for another. I'm thinking of covering something like this...

1. Pleased to reveal his Son (Galatians 1v16)
This is Paul's description of his conversion to Christ - a devout and successful religious man he was apprehended by the love of God in Christ. The persecutor became a preacher. God reveals his Son and thats' what changed everything for him... he didn't get an idea from other people. People preach that revelation but the true source is always God. The Galatian Christians shouldn't think they should add keeping Jewish law to their faith because the Christians of Judea heard what had happened to Paul and rejoiced. They knew, without knowing him, that he was a gospel man.
Major theme - if you want to know God, see Jesus.
Hence CU gives people opportunity to respond to Jesus. Uncover etc.

2. The Son of God who loved me (Galatians 2v20)
Here Peter is confronted by Paul for fear, hypocrisy and failure to live in line with the gospel. He's step out of the blessing of the Spirit. Paul walks him back through everything he already knows. The penny hadn't dropped but perhaps this was another day in which it moved a little deeper. The climax of the pastoral conversation shows that the cross of Christ wasn't meaningless, but rather very meaningful. Little words sing the gospel: in, for, with.
Major theme - if you want to know Jesus, see the cross.
Hence CU is built on the cross of Christ. Not just ABC but A-Z. It's the same message for all - so everything we can do is double-barrelled, we're here for the University not just for Christians.

3. If a son, then an heir (Galatians 4v7)
The conclusion of a long argument about the law and how the Galatians don't need to add law to their faith in Christ. Clothed in Christ, the Father sees Christ when he turns his eye to them. Filled with the Spirit, the Father hears Christ when he turns his ear to them. Our lives aren't about us but about Jesus, we're hid in him. We're on the plan. This means relational participation in Christ's life in the Trinity and it means a share in Christ's inheritance - a wide lense Christianity.
Major theme - God treats you as he treats Christ.
Hence CU values everyone and values everything.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

God and Suffering: my story

Tanya Marlow hosts my 'God and Suffering' story today, reflecting on the expected events we've experienced this year with our son...

Brokenness under the skin.

Friday, October 04, 2013

Lee Mack: I would read the Bible

Desert Island Discs invites guests to select the music they'd want with them on a Desert Island, plus Shakespeare and the Bible, in a closing remark Lee Mack reflected:
"I'm glad you get the Bible, because I would read the Bible. I think it's quite odd that people like myself, in their forties, quite happy to dismiss the Bible, but I've never read it. I always think that if an alien came down and you were the only person they met, and they said, 'What's life about? What's earth about? Tell us everything,' and you said, 'Well, there's a book here that purports to tell you everything. Some people believe it to be true; some people [do] not believe it [to be] true.' 'Wow, what's it like?' and you go, 'I don't know, I've never read it.' It would be an odd thing wouldn't it? So, at the very least, read it." 
Comedian Lee Mack on BBC Desert Island Discs via Tony Watkins